Explore the famous Mount Etna, the highest active volcano in Europe, in a memorable 3-day splitboarding trip led by one of the IFMGA-certified guides in the Peakshunter team.
Jan, Feb, Mar
Mount Etna is a stratovolcano (built up by many layers of lava and other volcanic materials) in Sicily’s east coast, between the cities of Catania and Messina, in Italy. Standing at 3,350 meters, it is the highest active volcano in Europe and a UNESCO World Heritage site.
Etna extends over a surface area of 1,190 km2. Thanks to its unique conical shape, it offers numerous wild off-piste routes on all sides, with abundant snow – often covered by a thin layer of ash –, perfect for backcountry enthusiasts!
Our tour’s meeting point will be the airport of the city of Catania, from where we will drive to the town of Nicolosi, on Mount Etna’s south side. The ascent to the 4-craters summit will begin on the following day, starting from Rifugio Sapienza at 1,910 meters. We can take the cable car uphill to the mountain station at 2,500 meters or directly splitboard up the lava slopes using skins and crampons, reaching the top in about 3 hours. While this is not a technical ascent, it still features a few challenging sections, which may require using crampons or knives. The average daily cumulative elevation gain is approximately 800-1,000 meters.
During our journey, we will ride across Etna visiting numerous volcanic cones and craters formed after the eruptions. Along the way, we will enjoy breathtaking views to the treeless vast white slopes, contrasting with the black lava rocks and the farther deep blue Ionian, Tyrrhenian, and Mediterranean seas. From above, we will also see the beautiful coast city of Taormina and the tip of the Italian Peninsula, the city of Calabria. We will spend the nights in two different B&Bs or mountain refuges.
The best time to go on this trip is from January to March, given the weather and snow conditions.
Ride Mount Etna’s slopes and discover its magical landscape in this fascinating 3-day splitboarding trip. Send me your booking request now!
I also offer a ski touring version of this program. If you are looking for other splitboarding experiences in Italy, check out the 6-day Monte Rosa trip, the 6-day Grand Paradiso National Park program, and the Valpelline 5-day splitboarding tour in the Aosta Valley.
- Accommodation included
- Guiding fee
- Transport during the trip
The price doesn't include: (1) Research and rescue insurance (recommended): €5 per person for 3 days (2) Lift tickets (3) Return flight to Catania (4) Mini-van related expenses (fuel) (the rental is included) (5) Meals, drinks, and other expenses not specified above (6) Surcharge for single room in the hotel or B&B (7) The guide’s expenses (lifts and meals) (8) Personal equipment (ARTVA, Shovel, probe and crampons): €40/day per person (9) Personal travel Insurance which must cover trip cancellation, early return, assistance during the trip, baggage loss, etc. (10) Anything else not listed in "Price includes"
Meeting at **Catania** airport and travel on a mini van to the town of **Nicolosi**, on Mount Etna’s south side, to check in at our accommodation (a B&B or a mountain hut). Depending on arrival time and weather conditions, we will go on a short hike to **La Montagnola** (2,700m), leaving from **Rifugio Sapienza** (1,910m), and visit the famous **Silvestri Craters**. After a rest at **Rifugio Monte Scavo**, we will return to the B&B/refuge. Ascent/descent time: 2 hours (using the lifts) Cumulative elevation gain: +250m uphill (from Rifugio Sapienza to La Montagnola)
Starting from Rifugio Sapienza**,** we will take the cable car up to the mountain station at 2,504 meters. We will hike across the **Piano del Lago** area, on the right, where we will find the new craters formed in 2001 and 2002. Passing by the **Torre del Filosofo**, we will reach the edge of the **Southeast Crater** (3,250m), and we will then climb to the saddle between the **Central** and **Northeast Craters** (3,350m). We will return to our accommodation via the same route. Ascent/descent time: 5 hours Cumulative elevation gain: +850m **Alternative plan: great crossing of Etna from South to North** (slightly more challenging route) After the Central and Northeast craters, we will descend along the **Crest of the Valle del Leone/Bove,** admiring beautiful views to Taormina and the Strait of Messina. We will descend towards the Volcanological Observatory, and then cross westwards towards the lifts, reaching the **Monte Conca** trail and the **Piano Provenzana** ski area (1,830m). Overnight in a B&B or hut. Ascent/descent time: 7 hours Cumulative elevation gain: 1,400m
We will head to the town of **Linguaglossa,** on the north side of the volcano, and ride along the southeast shoulder of the **Pizzi Deneri** (2,847m), which offers great views to the **Valle del Leone/Bove** and the summit craters. From **Monte Conca – Piano Provenzana,** we take the lift to the craters opened in 2002, towards the **Northeast Crater**. Soon after, we head left towards the **Piano delle Concazze** towards the **Volcanological Observatory**, from where we will be able to enjoy views to eastern Sicily, the Ionian Sea, and Calabria. We will then descend via the **Canalone delle Quarantore** back to **Piano Provenzana.** Transfer to **Catania airport.** Ascent/descent time: 6 hours Cumulative elevation gain: +1,000m **Alternative plan: visit to the Grotta del Gelo** From Monte Conca – Piano Provenzana, we will climb to **Monte Pizzillo** (1,400m), where we will visit the mini craters formed in 1947. Riding across several lava flows, we will arrive at the **Grotta del Gelo**, a lava cave located at 2,100 meters on the northern slope of Etna, famous for having the southernmost glacier in Europe. Ascent/descent time: 6 hours Cumulative elevation gain: 1,200m
Giving and receiving smiles, seeing the satisfaction on the faces of our customers, seeking opportunities for growth, stimulating authenticity in personal and group relationships, in sharing mountaineering disciplines, fears, efforts, and moments of difficulty, which are part of the integrated with experiences, essential ingredients of every summit climb: these are our focus, our beliefs, and our most important results, as outdoor Professionals and as people who love the mountains and their work as Alpine Guides!
Founded in 2013 by Elis and Silvia, PEAKSHUNTER Mountain Guides is a team of IFMGA-certified Mountain Professionals and outdoor activities experts, based in the town of Aosta, not far from Courmayeur-Chamonix, on the Italian side of the Mont Blanc massif.
We live and work in the beautiful Aosta Valley region, very close to French and Swiss borders near to Geneva, Milan, and Turin international airports.
Mont Blanc, Matterhorn, Dufourspitze, Pyramide Vincent and Regina Margherita Hut, Gran Paradiso, Breithorn, Lyskamm, Castor and Pollux are only a few of several 4000 Alps summits you can climb with us: most of our team of Guides were born and grew up close to these mountains and they have explored the ascent routes several times during different seasons, with skis or crampons!
- We love our work: we plan all our trips with great commitment and deep respect for the Alpine environment, for its inhabitants, and its territories. Including local traditions in different valleys and Alpine areas.
- We love Mountain, Nature, and Outdoor activities, that we like to share with people from all around the world. We are enthusiastic to meet like-minded adventurers and share new experiences and memorable emotions with the support of our Mountain Guides.
- Safety and Risk Management are essential for us, as elements of fundamental importance during every single trip we plan and carry out with our customers: for this reason, we offer introductory courses to the different alpine disciplines (Mountaineering, Rock climbing, Ice climbing, Ski mountaineering, Freeride, Rescue Crevasse, and Avalanche) to convey awareness and responsibility to our customers.
- We offer solid Experience, with several years organizing outdoor disciplines around mountain and wild areas, in many different countries of Italy and Europe, for individuals or groups, including 7-day customer support for booking, logistics, and personal assistance for planning and reservations.
- As certified Mountain Guides, we offer training courses, to improve technical skills and to learn basic knowledge about mountaineering in the Alps, which is essential to explore and climb the Mountains safely in any situation or conditions.
- We are happy to provide customized programs for every customer's demand: our Experience is synonymous with Professionalism and Customer Care to guarantee unforgettable emotions and beautiful smiles!
Fulfill your dreams, discover breathtaking views or simply enjoy an extraordinary day: you just need to use your imagination and we will carry out your trip as you desire to live it!
Let’s plan your next mountain project together!
Hi, good service from explore share and peaks hunter, only some miscommunication on 2 or 3 days program, due to bad communication between you both. The guide was OK, friendly although non very experienced in the practice of pédagogie and communication, especially before couloir des Goûter s, there can be better briefing on security and also in general on the whole expedition. But he can grow by learning some coaching lessons. We did not do the final ascension due to bad weather, a proposal and financial compensation for 2nd attempt would have been welcome.6/10.can do better.
Claudio is a great guide. He was careful to select objectives that matched our ability, and showed us a great time in beautiful Valpelline. Bravo.
Rolando was a great guide, super nice person... what else?
Great experience all over. The guides Rolando, Ellis and Claudio were very professional and nice. I always felt safe and the route was amazing. Good food and lodging also.
Although the weather wasn't the best on the day of our backcountry skiing trip, it was still the highlight of our stay in Courmayeur. Alberto was very helpful and overall an excellent guide. We highly recommend Alberto for any one in need of a backcountry skiing guide in Courmayeur.
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